Granite Peak, Montana 12799 ft 3902 m
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Granite Peak ascent route
Granite Peak is the highest peak in Montana and is generally reached from a little place called West Rosebud, near Red Lodge in the southeast corner of the state. My friend and I went there to escape some wet Canadian Rockies weather in August 1999. Our approach started from Mystic Lake power station, and is about 25 miles (38kms) round trip with an elevation gain of over 6000 ft. Most parties take two days or more; we started at 4 a.m. to try and do it in a l-o-n-g day. Hate those heavy overnight packs.
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After 7 hours of walking from the van, we finally saw our peak. Here, we have descended to the col between Granite Peak and Tempest Mountain and are starting up the slope towards the top. The route goes to the left here, searching out the easiest line (but not up the snow). Weather looks good so far...
There is definitely a little exposure on this route, and it is not just a hike like Mount Whitney, in California. Huckleberry Lake is far below.
Close-up of the last few hundred feet up Granite Peak. We're getting close here, but progress is a little slow finding the easiest way up. (We didn't bring a rope either). The summit is at "S" although we failed to see this obvious red mark hovering in the sky at the time. The easiest way towards it angles in from the right, below the ridge. We scrambled straight up following easiest terrain directly below. The route felt a bit like Mount Sir Donald, in the Selkirk Range of British Columbia, partly because the rock is actually solid....and because it's exposed!
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© Almost all photos copyright by the author 1999.